TURKEY & SYRIA TREMORS AFTERMATH – Rescuers in Turkey quake pull out survivors alive after 72 hours

Search and rescue operations in quake-hit Turkish cities continued overnight and in the early hours on Thursday 72 hours after the disaster.

A Turkish official said the disaster posed “very serious difficulties” to holding an election scheduled for May 14 in which President Tayyip Erdogan has been expected to face the toughest challenge in his two decades in power.

On the ground, many people in Turkey and Syria spent a third night sleeping outside or in cars in freezing winter temperatures, their homes destroyed or so shaken by the quakes they were too afraid to re-enter.

The earthquake, which struck in the night and was followed by powerful aftershocks, is on course to be Turkey’s most severe since 1999.  While rescuers raced against time to find survivors, public criticism has mounted over a lack of equipment, expertise and support in rescue efforts.